My idea of a wonderful afternoon is to sit on a large, soft couch. The ethereal music of ice cubes clinking glass fills the quiet room. A pile of well-loved library books slowly slide into the dip between cushions. I'm cozy in a cardigan or woolly sweater, barefoot, and balancing a tiny laptop in my lap. Yes, yes, the laptop is always involved, it seems. But it's consistent warmth and gentle hum, like a long sigh, adds to the familiar atmosphere.
You may not believe me, but I'm a bona fide Gemini. And it makes sense - I make sense - as a child of the star twins until we crash headfirst into this issue. I like to settle into my space. I feel that when I am surrounded by what inspires me (via posters, knick-knacks, etc), I can tap into those creative zones that help me keep writing. While my astrological genes say I should be fluttering from party to party, I find that a trip to the outdoor mall makes my cheeks glow with fresh adventure.
As much as I love the tranquility of home, I still love to explore new places and find little spots to sit and think and write. I used to have a few I would wander to in undergraduate school. I remember a grassy field next to the music building that overlooked the lake. There was also a leafy hill that sloped down from the side of the science building - if you sat at the top, you could peek in through a set of windows to see a lab below.
As I started my graduate journey, however, I have spent most of my time on campus in my office. When I'm there for a good few hours, grading or researching or just rocking back and forth in my chair, the fluorescent lights start to burn and the walls of the pumpkin-colored cubicle shrinks. Why don't I get out and explore the miles of university land, sprawling and endless compared to my small college? Well, I need a computer. All the time. Emails plop into my inbox like raindrops every few minutes and work doesn't slink into the shadows for later. It's always there. I figured out that simply allocating time away from the computer was not going to work: these school days are rarely that predictable. So, instead, I would purchase a companion who would free me from my office, but would allow me to keep up with steady flow of work. This pal: a netbook.
The Dell Inspiron mini was officially born today. This afternoon, when I dropped my duffel bag and Christmas presents for the family onto the tile floor, I saw the cardboard box waiting. Yay, no one opened it while I was away. We gathered around and watched it come to life. I stuck a big sticker on the front; the sad animals seem to be saying, "Take care of the environment, please." Very compelling. The pictures I've posed thus far feature it: I named him Roppongi.
Okay, so technically, Roppongi is the name of a train station and a whole district in Tokyo, Japan. But this netbook is named after the character, a personification of the district and station in a show called Miracle Train. If you have never seen it, I sincerely recommend it. Especially if you don't watch anime often. It's a show about a mythical train that helps lost ladies. It's very sweet and funny. Check out episode 1 here. And don't forget to turn on the closed captioning (CC). I know I did, haha.
Left: Roppongi. Right: My Roppongi.
So with Roppongi happily by my side (I'm thinking even lapdog. Very odd), I am embarking on my mission to become a nomad on campus. I don't want to say that, at the end of my three years, I had never stepped foot outside of my office. While the air is cool, I'm going to enjoy each change of scenery that I encounter. It's going to be great.